1) The Pygmalion myth originates from Ovid’s Metamorphoses wherein Pygmalion is a sculptor who falls in love with a perfect female stature he made. The sculpture is so perfectly made that he immediately feels enchanted with it. Pygmalion, the sculptor, had no interest in the local women as he thought them to be superficial creatures with no deep insight. He immersed himself in his work and devoted his life to perfecting his art. His creation of the perfect female sculpture lead him to adore its beauty to the extent that he started buying her clothes and jewelry while praying at the temple for a chance to meet a woman as perfect as her.
Soon, Aphrodite felt pity for him which lead her to touch the statue and brings it to life. This statue was named Galatea (sleeping beauty) by Pygmalion, and the sculptor was given a chance to experience heaven with his own creation. (Pygmalion Myth) Shaw’s narrative differs slightly from that of the Greek myth that has already been mentioned. Shaw accommodates the skeletal structure of the fantasy since a woman made from a raw material was brought into existence and then became a partner of the artist who created her.
The writer therefore did not allow the man to just fall in love with his ‘creation’ in contrast to Pygmalion who adored his statue from the first moment she was finished. As we observe in the play, Higgins is still taunting and his interaction with Eliza is impersonal and cold. Higgins doesn’t even consider Eliza as a romantic interest. (Spark-notes) Shaw resorted to injecting the play with a variety of different characters like Mrs. Pearce and Pickering to break the myth of Pygmalion and create his own story.
He has done this to suggest that the Pygmalion is incomplete and therefore not ideal. By transforming the Pygmalion myth in this way also managed to unveil the myths incompetence and unrealistic perspective and omitted the romances that leave out the daily aspects of human’s life. (Spark-notes. ) 2) Eliza Doolittle is not presented as a romantic figure in the play. She is initially presented as a romantic heroine but at the core she remained a character that actually defies the conventional notions of a romantic heroine.
Her transformation from a sassy and smart- mouthed flower girl with a terrible Cockney accent into an aristocratic sounding woman with a classy style that fits more with the requirements of the noble class has nothing to do with her own personal characteristics or innate qualities but with the fairy tale aspect of the matter that Shaw incorporated within the play. This means that Eliza is an independent woman and her accent transformation did not affect this particular quality of her character as the event of the ambassador’s part clearly illustrates.
Her brave dignified statement that criticized Higgins’s inferior treatment of her is just evidence of her preference of independency and individuality above aristocracy and social rules. This is how she won Higgins’s respect. (Thyer) 3) Professor Henry Higgins is Pygmalion to Eliza Doolittle’s who is a character based on the statue named Galatea. He is basically a professor and the author of Higgins’ Universal Alphabet. Higgins believes strongly concept of visible speech, as well as the recording and photographic material that documents his phonetic subjects.
In that way he managed to reduce the dialects and accents of into easily recognized understandable units. Higgins is presented as an unconventional man who likes to defy the social norms and rules which make him appear like an impatient and arrogant character. This is without doubt a characteristic that makes him a person who goes nowadays by the definition of unsociable. However on the other hand, he managed to show at many times compassion and humanitarian sympathy towards others. (Book-rags) On the other hand, Higgins is a very spoiled eccentric and an expert phonetician.
His stubbornness shows his fearless disregard for the Victorian rules of conduct. On a bet, he chose Eliza as a student who is a flower girl. He successfully altered Eliza’s but not in controlling her. For him, Eliza and the success of making her speak British accent perfectly is his own creation. However, Eliza rise up and threaten Higgins that she will teach other by using his method. From that moment on, she gains his respect. (Spark-notes) The most intriguing characters are Eliza, Freddy and Higgins. As we know, Freddy is Eliza’s lover.
Freddy used to be a part of a middle class society and lifestyle but he lacks a middle class education. In the story, Freddy married Eliza and they open a flower shop together. However, they have to take some classes in simple mathematics first before they can get along with the business since they are doing poorly. It really takes courage for some to enter such a business without having the skills that they needed the most when it comes to such term. (Book-rags) At some point, not all that we created can be called “our own” to the sense of doing whatever it is that we want with that creation.
It really takes a real hard work for someone to make a successful or even a perfect creation but it does not always happen that this creation could be treated in the way we wanted. Even God is a creator but the reality is that freedom has been given to us. The made creation needs therefore its freedom of action and we cannot claim possession of that creation. Pygmalion tells the story of a man who owned his creation making humans appear like a collective social institution which Shaw obviously disagreed with as his depiction of the independent and strong-willed character of Eliza demonstrates.
(Thyer) Works Cited. Book-rags. Pygmalion. Accessed on July 30, 2009 http://www. bookrags. com/notes/pyg/SUM. htm Pygmalion Myth – Greek II. Accessed on July 30, 2009 http://www. pygmalion. ws/stories/greek2. htm Spark-notes. Pygmalion. Accessed on July 30, 2009 http://www. sparknotes. com/lit/pygmalion/characters. html Thyer, Bruce A. Professor Higgins’ dilemma: Eliza Doolittle grows up- A review of sourcebook of psychological Treatment Manuals for Adult Disorders. Accessed on July 30, 2009 http://www. pubmedcentral. nih. gov/picrender. fcgi? artid=1284095&blobtype=pdfSample Essay of Edusson.com